How To Get My Business Online in 2023
Reading Time: 15 minutes
Did you know there are more than 1800 searches online every month here in the UK on how to get a business online? Here at Priority Pixels, we can’t say we’re surprised – when it comes to getting your business online in 2023, the process can seem more like you’re riding into battle than simply going digital.
From building a successful website to fostering a community on social media, the process of getting a business online can seem incredibly daunting. However, contrary to popular belief, getting online doesn’t have to feel like a never-ending marathon. Understanding just the very basics of how the process works can really help you and business when it comes to getting set up.
Here at Priority Pixels, we aim to show businesses the best possible route online in the most systematic way – one that is simple to understand yet effective, efficient and perhaps most important, exciting and engaging for both the client and their target audience.
So how does one get online?
Secure your domain name
If you already have an established business, you’ll already have an idea of what your domain name will be. However, new businesses will need to come up with a name and then, before getting excited, double check the domain is available.
Try and pick a name for your business that is unique. Google your choices and see if there are any other businesses out there with the same name. If so, you’ll want to scrap that idea and start afresh.
Once you have checked your favourite search engines and the domain registrar, you’ll need to go ahead and purchase it straight away. You don’t want to lose your domain by letting someone else buy it while you’re waiting around um-ing and ah-ing.
Decide on your branding
After you’ve chosen a name for your business and/or secured your domain name, you need to start thinking about your branding.
It’s important to do your market research. Here at Priority Pixels, we are approached by so many businesses that fail in this regard right from the start. It doesn’t matter whether you are designing a logo, building a website or running Google ads, understanding your target market and what they are looking for is the key to getting your branding right.
It’s also important to remember it’s not about what you want, what you like, what you think reads well or looks good – your branding should be about what appeals to your customer. At Priority Pixels, we offer branding services for this very reason. We will conduct market research based on conversations with the client and merge these with your personality, your product and/or service and your values to create an instantly recognisable verbal and visual brand that will work across all formats and media.
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Design your logo
After you’ve got a set of brand guidelines, it’s time to start thinking about your logo design.
Logo design is where a lot of people get it wrong. A logo should be instantly recognisable – your target audience needs to automatically associate it with your brand or company wherever they are.
A lot of businesses see their logo as something they have to do – all businesses have them right? Wrong! Others will go overboard and overthink the entire logo design process entirely. The trick here is to find the balance.
The key to good logo design is simplicity and clarity. It should help your business stand out from the crowd. You should also be able to use it across multiple formats. It’s also important to own it, so once you’ve got your logo don’t forget to get your copyright and trademark sorted.
Here at Priority Pixels, we offer bespoke logo design services with all of this in mind. We create multiple design concepts based on our conversations with the client, before revising those concepts until the client is satisfied. Most importantly we then supply the final logo design in multiple formats and sizes to ensure they are suitable for all media – both print and digital.
Hire a graphic designer
Once you’ve sorted out your branding and logo design, the next step is to think about what other promotional activities you will be undertaking. Do you need to arrange flyers or brochures? Do you need to create adverts, whether it be digital or in a newspaper?
If so, it’s a good idea to hire a graphic designer if you haven’t already. They should be able to create something that has the ability to speak to your audience through a subtle mix of words, images, fonts and colours.
It’s important to remember that you shouldn’t just create one design for all formats. You will need a design for each format as each format speaks to your customers in very different ways. One design will work better on Twitter than on Facebook for example.
At Priority Pixels, we offer bespoke graphic design services for this very reason. Too many customers we speak to think one size fits all and it doesn’t. So be smart and speak to your agency about what works best and how best to approach each format for your business. It will save you time and money in the future.
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Design your website
So you’ve created your brand, designed your logo and produced all the graphic design you need for your advertising – it’s time to start thinking about your website.
The overriding rule of thumb with website design is to make sure you prioritise the user experience. We speak to far too many clients with aesthetically beautiful websites that simply don’t function. That’s why when building your site, you need to think about what it’ll be used for. Is it an information-only site? Will it attract new business? Will it be used for products online?
Fundamentally, every website exists to attract users whether they spend money or not. So, there is no point in creating a website that you like but your customers don’t. That’s why at Priority Pixels, our website design services ensure everything is covered – from aesthetics to functionality. After all, why would you get a website designed only to go to another agency in a year’s time to get a new one built? What’s the point of having a cheap website built only to discover it hasn’t attracted a single customer?
Very often a business will base its web design project on price alone and aesthetics alone, which often results in spending more money further down the line. That’s why, when it comes to web design, you might as well do it right from the start and ensure your website works for your business.
Get yourself a wordsmith
After your site has been built, you’re going to need to think about content creation. Although this is where many businesses often find themselves copying articles from other sites or attempting to write the copy themselves. Unless you happen to be a professional writer, chances are you’re treading on dangerous ground – especially if you’re copying another website word for word.
Many businesses attempt to cut corners when it comes to copywriting. They either don’t want to pay for a copywriter, think it’s too expensive or simply don’t see the value in it.
In reality, ensuring your website has professionally written copy that incorporates your values and keywords will not only provide a much better perception of your business but will also help with your Google ranking. Google tells us time and time again that good quality content is the key to the success of a website on search engines. As a result, it makes little sense to cut corners when it comes to your content.
It’s also important to note that the world’s biggest search engines, including Google, don’t like duplicate content. So if you have copied your content from other websites, your website is going to suffer.
At the end of the day, hiring a copywriter will ensure the content on your website and social media is engaging, creative, relevant and clever.
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Take some pretty pictures
Nothing beats professionally taken photographs. Whether you opt for photography arranged by an agency or decide to use stock images, good-quality photography can really set the tone for your website.
Imagery is key in the modern age. That’s why photography is a great way of adding high-quality content to your website that is both unique and engaging to your customer.
Shoot some video
If you think videography is overkill, think again. Videos are an amazing way of adding content to your site and have a far greater hit rate than any other format when it comes to digital marketing. Visual, engaging and capable of saying almost anything to your customer, videos can make your site bigger and more authoritative.
Whether you have professional videos produced or choose to purchase stock videos, video can offer a different user experience to your customer – one that will drive traffic and in turn, boost your online conversion rate. You can also use videos for any content marketing you may wish to do on social media.
Find a hosting service
Next, it’s time to think about your hosting service. Hosting is required by all websites in order for them to appear on the internet. Think of your website as your ‘shop’ and the hosting is the ‘rent’ for your shop. In order for your shop to appear on the internet, you’ll need to pay your rent to your hosting service.
It’s important to make sure your hosting is located in the same country as your business, so if you are based in the UK, then get UK hosting. We see many clients who have their hosting in another country – this is a ranking factor for search engines, and can harm your SEO strategy. You should also make sure your hosting service has…
- Daily back-ups – You don’t want your site to go offline and lose everything because it wasn’t backed up.
- A decent uptime rate – There is no hosting provider in the world that can guarantee 100% uptime, so do not fall for this! Like anything else, the internet can break from time to time. Natural weather events such as storms can also knock server systems out.
It’s also important to consider sustainability when choosing your hosting service. Traditional data centres use a tremendous quantity of fossil fuel-based electricity to power the internet. With that carbon footprint only set to get bigger in the coming years, you might like to consider sustainable web hosting services.
At Priority Pixels, our web hosting services are 100% sustainable and powered by renewable energy. Read more about sustainable web hosting on our blog.
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Okay, so we are now roughly halfway through the process of how to get your business online in 2023. You’ve created your branding, designed a logo and created a website full of engaging copy, professional photography and video. You’ve got a hosting service and everything seems hunky dory.
You would think that you have now finished, right? Wrong!
Keeping up with maintenance
The next step to getting your business online (and staying there) is maintenance. If you’re a web designer or an IT specialist, you might be able to maintain your site yourself. If not, then you’ll need to get it maintained and managed by a professional service.
Failing to keep up with maintenance will almost definitely result in your website crashing or a security breach. As a result, you need to update your security and software on a regular basis – it’s the key to ensuring your website continues to run smoothly.
You will also want to make amendments to your site from time to time. For example, you might offer new services or decide to sell different products throughout the year or as your business grows.
At Priority Pixels, we’ve spoken to one too many businesses that have tried to update information on their website themselves only to disable something else on the site as a result. Paying a professional agency a monthly retainer to carry out these updates will ensure your site is updated without ruining all the work put into the original design.
Promoting your business online
Promoting your business online can take on many shapes. From search engine optimisation to email marketing, you have two choices when it comes to promoting your business – either do it yourself or pay for someone else to do it.
It’s important to remember that just because you have a website built, doesn’t mean all of a sudden you are going to get a lot of customers. You still have to promote your website just like you would a business on the high street.
Search engine optimisation
Search engine optimisation, also known as SEO, is the key that guarantees the success of your website. The more forward-thinking your SEO strategy, the higher up your website will appear on search engines.
SEO is also a huge part of the web design process. You can build SEO into your site from the wireframe up to ensure your site is indexed by Google easily – but the grind doesn’t stop there. You will need to carry on with SEO for the duration of your website’s lifetime.
If you do decide to stop, you will probably drop off the rankings quicker than it took for you to get there. So if you want to appear on the first page of Google, Bing and other search engines organically, an ongoing SEO strategy is the way to do it.
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Pay-per-click advertising, known more commonly as PPC, is important for any business. However, it’s especially important at the beginning of your website’s life. This is because, while your website is trying to get up the rankings organically, you still need to attract customers. This is where PPC comes in, which you can use to run sponsored advertising campaigns using Google Ads or Bing Ads which appear at the top search engine pages.
Some businesses think they can do it themselves. Although you can attempt to take on a PPC campaign with no assistance, you may find your ads will be more expensive in the long term. Simply running an ad and leaving it will not be the best way of ensuring you are getting value for money in your ad campaigns.
Hiring an agency to carry out your keyword analysis will help your business find the best keywords for your ads. They’ll also design an ad for your business that’s engaging and relevant so your ad campaign will be more cost-effective in the long run. When it comes to PPC it’s simple math really – the price per click comes down if your ad is relevant and engaging. The price per click goes up if your ad is not relevant or engaging. Comprehende?
At the end of the day, running PPC ads is also a matter of trial and error. You can only really find out how successful an ad is by running it and monitoring the result. If you have an agency run your campaign for you, they will do this on your behalf.
At Priority Pixels, we offer PPC management services for large and small businesses alike.
Email marketing is a must in the modern age. This is because, with email marketing, your business has direct contact with your target audience. It’s a great way to drive sales as well as let your customers know about your business.
How many marketing emails do you just send to your trash? Which emails do you look at briefly before binning? How many have you received which resulted in a purchase? Like any strategy, email marketing requires careful planning and research. Sending random emails will not cut it.
That’s why at Priority Pixels, we offer bespoke email marketing services that aim to create stunning, on-brand HTML-coded emails. Our team can also research what style and design are working best for your customers as well as the best times to send out your marketing. Doing so will result in a higher clickthrough rate for your email marketing, which can improve your return on investment.
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Social media is one of those things in marketing that businesses get super excited about in the beginning – then after a while, they realise it’s actually a full-time job in itself and before long it’s pushed to one side.
In reality, there is not a business today that can ignore social media. Like it or not, you need social media marketing. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or any other platform you can think of, you also need to ensure your business is active on all your accounts on a regular basis.
It’s also important to remember that social media is about driving potential customers to your website. You should be publishing unique and engaging content across all of the platforms, which can help foster a community online around your brand and ultimately allow you to converse with both existing and potential customers alike in real time.
Getting your business online with Priority Pixels
In short, getting your business online in 2023 is a very different prospect than it was a decade ago. Starting a business is one of the most significant challenges a person will undertake in their lifetime and it’s important to make sure you research and plan extensively.
These days, the internet is the “go-to” place for products and services. However, whatever your business provides, there are always going to be other businesses offering it too. That’s why it’s never been more important to give your target audience a reason to trust your business.
When it comes to building that trust. Priority Pixels can help you get there. Our professional digital marketing team have been getting businesses online successfully since 2016 and would be delighted to assist you.